Joe Miller, the tea-party-backed Alaska Republican who lost a 2010 Senate race, announced on Sunday that he is launching an exploratory committee as he considers another Senate campaign.
The announcement comes just two days after first-term Democratic Sen. Mark Begich announced raising almost $1 million in the first fundraising quarter of the cycle. It also comes after a tumultuous week at the state Republican Party, which ousted yet another chairman.
(See also in Roll Call: Alaska: Begich Raised $948K)
“For several months now, my wife and I have engaged in serious reflection about our family, Alaska, and the state of our nation,” Miller said in an email to supporters. “After consultation with our political advisers, trusted friends, and many of our 2010 volunteers, we have decided to test the waters for a 2014 US Senate run.”
In a full statement posted to his website, Miller asks for donations and states that he is attempting to determine whether “grassroots Republicans” will “step up and join us in the fight for freedom.”
The GOP primary field remains officially empty, though Miller is the second Republican to announce he is seriously considering running. Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell has launched a campaign website and said he has formed an exploratory committee — though there is no record of one on the Federal Election Commission website.
(See also in Roll Call: Begich to Focus on Alaska Roots in Re-Election Bid)
Miller defeated Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski in the 2010 GOP primary. But Murkowski waged an unprecedented write-in campaign and, after a series of stumbles by Miller, defeated Miller in the general.